Jets Trade Proposal Sends Second-Year Quarterback to New York

Aidan O'Connell

Getty A New York Jets trade proposal would send Aidan O'Connell to the Big Apple.

As the New York Jets prepare for the 2024 NFL Draft, a trade back could be in play.

The Jets could also stay put and take a player with the No. 10 pick. However, ESPN’s Bill Barnwell came up with an interesting trade proposal involving the Las Vegas Raiders in his all-trade mock draft.

Here are the full details of that trade, with the scenario being that Michigan QB JJ McCarthy is still on the board:

Jets receive: 13th, 44th overall picks and QB Aidan O’Connell

Raiders receive: 10th, 111th overall picks

“At the cost of a second-round pick, would the Raiders be willing to jump ahead of the Vikings and Broncos to land McCarthy?” Barnwell wrote. “The Jets would also get a potential backup for Rodgers in O’Connell, who exceeded expectations in a hopeless situation a year ago. And frankly, while moving down three spots in Round 1, they still might be able to draft the same player they wanted at No. 10.”

Aidan O’Connell Is a Suitable Backup Quarterback

He may not be the flashiest player, but O’Connell could be an ideal backup behind Aaron Rodgers.

O’Connell was a fourth-round pick in the 2023 NFL Draft out of Purdue. The former walk-on carved out a solid college career before going pro, earning two second-team All-Big Ten selections.

The Raiders expected Jimmy Garoppolo to be their preferred starter in 2023. However, a back injury early in the season forced O’Connell into the starting lineup. The rookie ended up playing a good chunk of the season, starting 10 games.

O’Connell held his own as the starter, going 5-5 in games he started. He completed 62.1 percent of his passes for 2,218 yards, 12 touchdowns, and seven interceptions.

At 25 years old, O’Connell would be an intriguing developmental quarterback behind Rodgers. The Jets are already planning on moving on from Zach Wilson, but a potential move for O’Connell would likely require them to get rid of the former No. 2 overall pick before going after another quarterback.

Even if he doesn’t become a preferred starter in the NFL, O’Connell should have a long career as a backup in the league.

Potential Jets Draft Targets

The Jets could move back in the draft, but if they stay with the No. 10 pick, a few prospects stand out as likely targets.

Brock Bowers continues to be the popular pick for the Jets. New York has already met with the star end, and his presence in the middle of the field could give Rodgers a playmaking safety blanket in the middle of the field.

If the Jets want a receiver, then Rome Odunze could be a possibility. The big-bodied wideout out of Washington has excellent contested-catch ability, along with solid footwork to be a nuanced route runner.

An offensive lineman might make more sense from a long-term viewpoint. Notre Dame Joe Alt is likely to go early, but an unexpected fall would make him an easy choice for the Jets. Other offensive linemen to keep an eye on include Taliese Fuaga, Tory Fautanu and Olu Fashanu.

The good news for the Jets is that they’ll have plenty of options for the No. 10 pick, including trading back.


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